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Josh Shepard

A Due Change in Format

Rating: 2 votes, 4.00 average.
Hello, everyone.

Welcome to my latest blog. Today I would like to discuss something that I think would be a welcomed thing among us fans. That thing is a change in the format of WWE television.

In my earliest memories of professional wrestling, there were two main shows to choose from: WCW Monday Nitro, and WW(F) Raw is War/WarZone. Most everyone knows the story of the Monday Night Wars, so I won't be going into any amount of details with that story. However, the mention of the Wars is relevant in this blog, especially given the mention of Nitro.

Ted Turner and Eric Bischoff, in their grand attempt at raging a ratings war with Vince McMahon, had a stroke of genious when they extended the run-time of Nitro by an hour. This was an awesome move for me, personally, because this hour featured the most wrestling of the show. This part of the show was also a time when the nWo wasn't running roughshod on the entire roster, at least for a while. The first hour of Nitro was about wrestling.

Now let's fast-forward to the current days of programming.

WWE has two main shows. Each show has two-hour timeslots. Each show also has very little to no wrestling. The quality of matches typically take the form of "squash match" or end pre-maturely due to some kind of disqualification. Throw in a random tag-team match, and you have your typical WWE television card.

The other hour and a half of television is spent with various people talking.

I uinderstand that WWE's main goal is to sell pay-per-views. I understand that in order to do that, the feel they need to have their superstars promote their feuds and matches. However, I feel that the WWE would receive more pay-per-view buys if the fans didn't feel like the only way they could see a decent match is to pay fifty to sixty-five dollars for it.

If the WWE would simply provide more free WRESTLING to it's viewers, I feel it would pay in dividends when the monthly pay-per-view rolls around.

An easy way to do this would be to extend Raw's timeslot by an hour.

I say Raw for a few reasons:

1. More people watch television on Monday nights than on Friday nights, so people more people would be tuning in.

2. Since more people would be watching, it would be easier to secure advertisers to pay for the extra hour of programming.

Also, USA Network would probably have no problems fitting in WWE's extra hour of programming. I'm pretty sure that an extra hour of WWE would score them more viewers than their final hour in their weekly NCIS marathon.

WWE would also benefit because it would be a chance to showcase more than the same eight or ten wrestlers we see from week to week, thus the fans would be more enticed to watch.

WWE could also put more of a focus on the tag-team titles, and bring back tag-team wrestling, which would entice the fans to watch.

Rather than pilng them in top of one another, WWE could spread their promos and backstage segments apart, which would help hold the live audience, as well as the viewers' attention.

Both the US and Intercontinental titles could be defended on a weekly basis, giving both belts some much needed importance and prestige, which the fans would love.

Then, when the pay-per-view comes, the WWE could cash in on the fans' interest big time. They could fill the undercard with a great tag-team title match, as well as one or two solid non-title matches. The mid-card could be a fatal-four-way for the US title and a triple threat for the Intercontinental title. You could headline the main events with WWE and World Heavyweight title matches. The WWE would have more potential for pay-per-view buys than they've had in years, all because of one extra hour a week.

Also, with the main roster being as full as it is, and more FCW talents on the way, an extra hour would be a logical step in developing new stars.

Both the WWE and the fans have a lot to be gained from a three-hour Raw timeslot. It has always been the opinion of this humble blogger that the WWE would generate more pay-per-view buys if the fans didn't feel like it was the only way to see actual wrestling. I, myself, feel cheated everytime I bite the proverbial bullet and order a pay-per-view.

I also feel that the WWE needs to "grow up" so to speak, and stop blaming individual superstars for bringing down the buyrate. One wrestler alone is not responsible.

WWE can also stop blaming the economy for the low buyrates. In nearly every major news publication since the U.S. Recession began, there have been articles about how people still spend their money on various forms of entertainment. The reason they are not buying the WWE's brand of entertainment every month is because it's simply not worth it. Not now, at least.

In final, I would like to thank everyone for reading what is now my second blog on this site. I hope that the fans of my last blog enjoy this one just as much, if not more. As always, your comments are not only allowed, but encouraged and appreciated.

Thank you.

Shepard out.

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Updated 04-13-2012 at 03:19 PM by Josh Shepard

Thoughts and Opinions


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  1. TheShockMaster's Avatar
    "In nearly every major news publication since the U.S. Recession began, there have been articles about how people still spend their money on various forms of entertainment."

    If you understand how our economy works, I don't think you'd say that. Sure, people are spending money on other forms of entertainment, but less people overall are spending money on entertainment. A $1 song is cheaper than a $50 pay-per-view. To rule out the economy as a factor, though, I strongly disagree.
  2. Josh Shepard's Avatar
    @TheShockMaster Ah... I do understand our economy. I sell a medium of entertainment for a living. I understand that people are apprehensive to spend their money on anything that's not necessity. But, for Vince to blame the economy for low pay-per-view numbers is a bit unfair. If the product wasn't the often stale product that it typically is, then people may choose to buy a pay-per-view. When people buy video games, a lot of people pay close attention to a number of things. They pay attention to the game's development. They look at the developer's track record. If it's the latest in a series of games, then people look at the history of the series. People that watch wrestling, and have to "pinch pennies" at the same time, then a lot of them examine the same factors in the WWE. The WWE hasn't really been worth the money, especially when people have to exercise caution when spending their money. So, in a sense, Vince can blame the economy, but only because the product isn't worth the risk.
  3. THE_CRIPPLER's Avatar
    Honestly I just watched Nitro and Raw on WWE 24/7 and Nitro felt like they extended a 1 hour of programing to 3 hours, Raw seemed more action packed and and it had 1/3 of the wrestlers WCW had.... Its how the Time is used and not how much time it is, Raw seems like it has many segments that just are thrown in to fill time.

    Honestly, WWE gives away PPV main events on Raw constantly, Del Rio and CM Punk faced each other 3 times on Raw right before the PPV main event, Ziggler and CM Punk had a few Great matches on Raw and a Lackluster PPV match at the Royal Rumble... I think the Problem with Raw is, they have matches on Raw and have people get squased such as Del Rio or Miz then 3 weeks later they want you pay $50 Dollars to see that same match on PPV as the main event. It seems dumb.

    I think WWE needs to book more compeling IC and US title feuds and have them be main events for Raw and Smackdown, Book things 2 weeks ahead of time instead of 1 hour ahead of time.... More number 1 contender matches, Things of that nature.
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